Ngā mihi o Matariki, te tau hou Māori (Happy Matariki)

Matariki is a star cluster with traditions all over the world. It is also recognised by many as the Pleiades, and it has other names in other cultures, such as Kungkarungkara, Subaru, Mao, the Flint Boys, and the Orphan Boys, to name a few.

Traditionally in Aotearoa New Zealand, it is a time to look towards the nine stars of Matariki and predict the winter harvest, celebrate new life, remember those who have passed, reflect on the year behind us and the year ahead, share food, tell stories, play music, and spend time with whānau.

In 2023, Matariki will be celebrated on 14 July. How are you celebrating Matariki this year? Here are some ideas.

  1. Reflect. Remember loved ones who have passed away. Share memories of them, or visit their final resting place. Write down your goals and dreams for the year ahead. 
  2. Create. If you have kids or enjoy crafting, making a Matariki star bunting or a kite may be a fun activity
  3. Connect. Attend a local event, invite loved ones over, or meet up with a friend. 
  4. Nourish. Matariki is traditionally a time to get together with friends and / or whānau to share kai harvested from past seasons, and also prepare the ground for new crops. Plant a tree or try Māori vegetables such as kumara, kamo kamo, taro, puha and uwhi.  
  5. Learn. Watch how to find the Matariki star cluster, do this quiz from Te Papa, or share stories – here’s one: The Little Kiwi’s Matariki  
  6. Care. Do something for your body, your spirit and your mind. 

Photograph: Felix Mittermeier from Unsplash